Watercolor image of the iconic Opal Pool in Oregon.

Jump at the Chance

Oregon summers are all about hikes, camping, beach trips. Bring on the outdoor adventures. I love it all. Yet as we plan out the next few months, I am feeling a little nostalgic. I miss having a car packed full of little boys to take along. And some of our most memorable destinations have been lost to devastating natural disasters and climate change.

One of my all-time favorite adventures was backpacking overnight with the boys at Jawbone Flats along Opal Creek. It was a journey through man-made and nature-made history. We traveled through an historic Oregon mining town. Admired ancient tree groves. Marveled at Opal Creek’s dazzling turquoise waters.

If you were among the brave (or foolish), a visit to Opal Creek required a jump into Opal Pool. It is breathtaking. Figuratively for its beauty. Literally for its frigid cold water. I jumped first and remember trying not to show the shock on my face. I wanted my boys to follow. And they did!

The 2020 wildfires damaged many Oregon treasures. The structures and wilderness of the Opal Creek area remain closed through 2022. I’m so glad we all jumped in when we had the chance.

Photography and art keep a powerful record of what we are grateful for. They also serve as a reminder to protect what we love. The Opal Creek Ancient Forest Center is a group that gets it. A group devoted to seeing the wonders of Opal Creek thrive again. Lend them your support if you are able.

The “Jump In” Opal Pool watercolor is now available as an 8×10″ art of gratitude press print on the luxurious and sustainable bamboo paper. Loving and celebrating the planet is my hopeful path to saving it.

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